Monday, January 22, 2018

Fresh Kills _ A Prada Moment - Day 15



Prada Moment - Day 15
I guess I have to begin at birth.  I am not one to remember pain but then again maybe nobody at birth knew how to identify pain.  Somehow it got stored in some miscellaneous data base until it could be identified and archived.
Surely females, when then give birth, feel the pain their mothers felt when they gave birth.  Not to say females understand what the infant feels.  Of course, infants for the most part cry being thrown out of warm liquid comfort zone and forced to change environments on a survive or die scale.
Perhaps for an infant, ignorance is a blessing.  That absolute no going back, you’re here, live with it, do or die, birth moment is best forgotten and left uncategorized and uncompared to any other.
Still I have wondered through the years, that maybe that Yung thing in psychology is the first two years of your life in data collecting still rumbling around uncatalogued or not capable of being catalogued later in life.  It is lost data.  It was useful data as is, at the moment, in the moment kind of way.  It was perhaps also strung together in memory, in hours or daily loops of learned behavior communication, which did not make it to the final eye opening totally present, that each of us marks our backward history by.
In a way it is not like riding a bike now in the present.  It is, the past, all that compressed, forgotten attempts to ride the bike fully.  To put together desire, passion, balance and perfect flight marks a multiple intersection of data rather than any one or few strings of data or memory.
Who, on the moon in a space suit and walking around a whole new environment remembers the first few days of flight training as a cadet?
I started this subject with birth and I guess I have to in this outer waiting room to the afterlife have to reconcile the mother thing. Life begins with mom.  Our earliest habits, tastes and behaviors mimic the person we first saw after birth and the one we clung to both before and after that birth.
With mom, it is difficult to reconcile the thing.  I am looking back.  I am using adult prejudice and adult preferences in dealing with, dissecting and commented on past memory data.
In a way there always was a distance between myself and my mother. 
I begin to see her face in silhouette.
The scene is a seemingly rare moment when she acted out of the normal. In fact I have probably played this scene over in my mind through the years and seem to know all the facts underlying that scene now.
I am four years old.  We are walking to a nearby playground.  In my mind I have always known it was gray blustery March.  The impressive tall Schlichter clock tower over the old Schlichter rope factory dominates its surroundings as it has done since before the Civil War.  In fact, this building had supplied a very large percentage of the rope and rigging that ran the U.S. Navy in their blockade of the South during that war.
The playground is quiet, empty on a school day.  Seeding will be done in another month or two to replace the grass on one baseball diamond on the space. Years later my research would reveal that this playground for factory workers’ children, had at one time been a black chimney belching mill just like Schlichter’s
The cyclone fence surrounding the playground is rusting just like the batting cage surrounding home plate of the baseball diamond.
One sole small building housing the boys and girls bathrooms and the groundskeeper’s office and supply closet sat sadly on the lot.  Nearby were two sliding boards, one small and the other large for bigger bids.  So too were a set of swings, one junior and one senior. 
One “Jack and Jill” with stairs, platform, monkey bars and broad slide, with its gazebo like roof over the platform completed this working class recreation scene in Harrowgate, Philadelphia.
Next to the playground as a boundary marker and artificial wall was the elevated embankment of a factory feeder train track, the Trenton Avenue line.  The embankment was beyond more rusting cyclone fence and the large chunks of gravel on the embankment seemed to carry the black accent of coal dust and train soot of over half a century.
Into this cheerless, colorless, world, comes my mother with a four year old boy and a one and half year old sister, trying to do something different in her life. Perhaps her day trip was some kind of out of the box of a row house life experience, that house only some three or four blocks over.
Was this trip into the cold March day an escape from her depression?  Got to mention the depression.  She suffered from it and my father too.
Of course, nobody in those days went to see a shrink to talk about depression.  The thing was not called mental health.  You were either crazy or not.  Any problems, you talk to the priest.  Salvation of the soul was more important than any mental health issues.  Right?
I am looking back at my mother on this day.  I have looked back at this day as sort of a singular photo.  In a way all the millions of images available on TV, the internet, used to only be available in books and or encyclopedias.
In a way I am not framing this moment in a black and white photo thing in a photo album.  This image in the wind of the day is my Prada image, touchstone image on which all other images and memories have to go through as a gateway in and out of my own personal archive of memory and imprints on my soul.
Is this what it is all about?  Condensing? Compressing? Memory? A life? One life.  A soul.
Well, the Prada image that should have been painted by a Goya both in normal tones and lights as well as in the maddening images that only a Goya later in life, and crazy from the lead in his paints, could paint.
Don’t I deserve a Prada or a Louvre to store the treasures of my life?  Am I not the king of my destiny? Was the king of…
This reconciliation with mom and her issues that overlapped with my own issues in living never had a simple ending, a typical ending, a final closure.
The family broke up after my father’s death.  And I for some reason was not attracted to points west. Though in retrospect, his wife and my siblings had to leave, run away from the reality of my father’s death, his suicide.
I, perhaps instinctively, perhaps with unseen or unheard advice of guardian spirits or ancestors, did not want to follow them out west. 
I had been away, out of town, when a man cheated out of his lousy steel worker’s pension of $240 a month, by some corporate raiders, had taken his own life on the last week of his last unemployment check.
And in retrospect, I could have done more but I was young and trying to get away from that damned Philly Quaker self-loathing subculture, a puritanical culture that overlapped with the self-hating Catholic culture of that other immigrant culture layer.
In a way I look at my Prada Image and see a decaying rope mill built before the Civil War.  In a way I can see a bright shiny thing of enterprise.  I can see a great grandfather, right off the boat, running away from the Potato Famine and drafted to go fight in Lincoln’s corporate war fighting for the northern mill owners, northern bankers, and northern railroads.
If I look at the death of an inner city like Philly I see the death of the old highways, the railroads, obsolete, gone.  I see the factories, and the factory workers culture die with the factories attached to these obsolete railroad highways, railroads accommodating factory workers and factory workers’ housing and economy dying, off in favor of the white burbs, plastic city on a hill destination, invented after WWII.
I can see a handful of generations in my bloodline each having to accommodate and bend with massive economic changes.  My own flight to New York City made me a migrant, an emigrant from this dying city. 
I had since reconciled myself to the many economic factors that contributed to my father’s death.  Economic statistics are sometimes easier than the personal statistics attached to a death, any death, in a family.
The personal secrets that my mother and father harbored beneath the mean, hard factory workers life were always there, always just beneath the surface but always only for those who did not fear to tread, seek, find, understand, reconcile. 
At this point, and my appearance in Limbo, I sense that I had finished with dad and his inputs to my life.  I had time and years and shrinks to help me reconcile my life regarding dad.  I had not put my faith in the power of priests to comfort or smooth over the pain of day to day living with a few pithy sayings and prayers. That damned fear of God thing.
I knew instinctively early on in life that I was surrounded by some weird bubble of secrets in the family, the culture of the neighborhood, in the national psyche, the global soul.




Sunday, January 21, 2018

Fresh Kills _ Day 14


Day 14
Indeed they were perhaps dreams. Like this dream. But I was exhausted.
I had been holding back on letting go, sitting back and trying to feel comfort in this new temporary or permanent environment.
I must had remembered a bed from a museum and associated it as a safe place.  Museums are full of trusted antiques that fascinate and at the same time they are secure. The place is full of guards protecting the treasures.
I chose a simple middle class, Middle Ages, northern European environment.  Something close to my genetic background.
Though most of my ancestry is Irish and Anglo, one strain goes back to the Pennsylvania Deutsch.
Here in some room from some old castle, one of my ancestors may have slept as well.  Who is to know?
I perhaps in life had an affinity with this old museum spot.  Perhaps I inwardly knew that I would be stopping by here again in my quarantine in the afterlife before the official hereafter. 
Oh! The pain!
I had been blank on the pain thing since I passed over.  I was such a ball of fright, disbelief and physical shock colliding with present reality.
Perhaps in a tragic or violent death there are those frozen moments of pain that exist here and pass over in thought with you.  I know this must be a thought process.  Since I got sense of a shadowy sense of myself, with the force and outline of my hands in front of me, the thought of having any kind of surrogate earth like body pushed me into mind of that lost body.
Here, the pain of life in general, a lifetime, is a long progression like that of day, and of waking to waking, from sleep to sleep as well.
The sleep is a stopover.  A resting point.  A recharging thing.
In a way the law of motion and an opposite and equal reaction must exist here as well.  A life and a whole energy in that life must have pushed against some fabric of the universe.  Here in dream land is a sense of reaction to that life.
Again the pain! Make it stop!
Why was I the victim? I don’t want to be the victim.
Without reason or without form I am out of the museum room and back on that floor staring down the racing jet coming right at me.
I flinch but do not run.  The black at the head of the nose makes contact.  Black again everywhere.
But no pain.  I relived the final moment and much of the shock and certainly a split second of body pain were not reenacted.
I feel reassured.
But a strange real, non-real sense makes me believe that the feeling of pain is somehow an energy and transcends itself to here.
Death is somehow an archiving energy. The time after death is for the storage of one creature’s activity in life.  It is somehow a bit of information somehow stored somewhere and somehow within the context of the universe.
That I sense that the energy of pain is a large energy.
That somehow I must catalogue it for future reference before me and the universe can go on together in terms of future form.




Saturday, January 20, 2018

Fresh Kills _ Awake - Day 13


Awake - Day 13
I awaken. Uneasy.
And the spend the day trying to recall – my dreams?





Friday, January 19, 2018

Fresh Kills _ Sleep - Day 12


Sleep - Day 12
I fall into deep sleep without dreams. 
Is this the final gesture?
The final measure of it all, by me?



Thursday, January 18, 2018

Fresh Kills _ A Prayer - Day 11


A Prayer - Day 11
Where does all this madness end?
No answer.
I, in my mind, make a vision. I am thinking of some room I once saw in a museum.  It is some comfortable 16th century room from Germany with brick floor tiles and white washed walls and sturdy wood beamed roof.  Light is cascading in through thick leaded round glass panes into the room.
It evoked a presence to me when I was alive.  It still evokes something now that I am dead.  I have seen similar rooms in paintings by Vermeer. In this room is some sort of period bed.  It is the bed I seek but not for sleep.  I am looking to find a quiet room like something Luther had said.  I kneel in front of the bed.  Cross myself in the old superstitious fashion and begin in silent prayer.
What am I praying for? An end to this madness.  And exit out of this private hell.  This loneliness past death.
In a lot of popular culture and in particular the movies, you somehow get greeted on the other side with a guide of sorts, somebody you knew in life or some angel type creature to give you the low down on the new digs.
Strange how myth on earth would give you something in death that you never got in life.
Hey, it does take a village to raise a child.  But it is only in bits and pieces of experience, observations, failures, successes that we all in essence raise ourselves with the group, clan, tribe, nation.
Life does not come with an instruction manual.  That you learn when you raise a kid yourself.
Must have a child, children passed this existence here, back there etc.
It is something you cannot communicate to someone who has never had kids.
It is all well and good for some friend or unmarried relative to think that kids are great.  But they don’t have to run a toddler to the emergency room with a raging fever from an ear infection.  Then try and find some all-night pharmacy to fill a prescription of some bubble gum smelling antibiotic oral elixir.  Don’t have to get up with an hour’s rest and try to function in a job for eight hours and then come home to a spouse equally exhausted and try to function as normal whatever that is.
Where was I? 
I have only had some deep need to prayer a handful of times in my life.  Luther’s invitation to talk to the deity is a start.
Like I said, I have only done something as dramatic as the present situation only a handful of times in my life.
Prayers at a side of a bed are a child’s thing.  No doubt, the adult fear of death plants that fear in children with the plea to protect the soul, the spirit?
Never got around to nailing down definitions when I was alive.  Soul? Spirit? Are they different? Are they the same?
In that bizarre army oath of Constantine, they send Jesus into hell for three days.  Where do you park the perfect man’s soul for – it wasn’t even a full three days.
Such a strange religion I was born into.  Cultural context.  Was this Christian myth a full blown descendant of some story told around a campfire ten thousand years ago?

I am on my knees and the prayer or prayers do not come upon my lips.  Did my non-belief as an adult follow me here? Yes. This is useless.  What do I have to bargain with and to someone or something that is if it exists more powerful than puny little moi.



Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Fresh Kills _ A Whole New Landscape - Day 10


A Whole New Landscape - Day 10
Exiting the crawl space or a pup tent I think maybe the light outside would make itself evident but it not.
Total darkness.
I take a few steps away and look back at the only light on the landscape which seems to be within the small enclosure under the canvas.  It had a mellow glow piercing the fabric.
Weird.
Everything is backwards here.  Logic at least.  One second the light is outside.  I go outside and the light is trapped within.  No logic to it.
I keep on walking or sense to walk more steps, move a distance and look back again.  The muted light within is getting smaller in the distance.
I stop.  Then fixing my sight on the distant glow of light, I try to circle the light at an equal distance.   I make a circle but am I on an even plane?  Am I moving around the points of sphere? 
Lack of gravity or lack of a body and an inner ear make all movements sometimes difficult if I focus too much thought or attention on them.
The distant light grows smaller and I am reminded of a single star in a dark sky. The light disappears.  The space is dark again.
I am transported back to that place where I had seen my old friend Myrtle in some rural part of Illinois of a century past.  The landscape is lush. The sky is blue.  It is bright but I sense no source of light as in a sun.  I walk and feel a breeze and I can smell the earth.
Smell? Where does that come from?  More likely memory than reality.
I stop.  The vision fades.
But now that the vision has faded, and before that the embers of light in the tent thing were gone, now an invisible trace of energy pulses through me.  I am aglow and more than that I can make out a faint trace of the hands and arms I used to have.
No great leap. The energy fades.  The outline fades.  The energy returns.  The outline of hands and arms return as well.  And so on and so forth. 
I sense a pulse like that of a heart beat growing but it is no human heart.  At my center of being is a faint glow of light that flickers on and off.  So too, my half ethereal body parts seems to get a sense of being on the glow, energy or whatever and hold onto the pulse and hold onto their faint outline with every beat of this strange energy.
In a way I can wave the faint trace of my hands or what passes for hands in this strange new environment.  I am thoughtful of long forgotten pictures of transparent jellyfish in the oceans of that once real and past world of the living.
Am I in some strange aquatic environment?  Aquatic and or spiritual atmosphere? Environment?
I say, no, I think spiritual.  Is this my spirit? Is spirit real? Is soul real?
What am I?
I am asking questions that have been asked by thousands of years by my species.  Always the quest and or questions continue.  Are these questions started here in this dead zone, this limbo?  Do the questions shake out of here, transcend to the world of the living? Am I just some echo or a true muse to others not heard or seen?
The landscape returns.  I drove through Illinois once traveling cross country by car in early spring and it seemed beautiful.  On that trip alone, one saw different poses of both a dying winter and a birthing spring from hour to hour, county by county, state by state.  Missouri was misery including the biggest potholes I had ever seen or traveled over in my life as I passed through St. Louis.  Caught a glimpse of the Gateway Arch monument out of the corner of one eye as I exited Missouri on a bridge crossing the mighty Mississippi River. 
Illinois was a pleasant surprise.
The old lady, Myrtle, she gave me a gift at the moment of death or shortly thereafter or even instantaneously. I had been her elder for a brief time in a small congregation in Arizona.  Perhaps I should have stayed there. Perhaps?
Sarcasm?  I must be getting better or acclimated to this new existence temporary or otherwise.  She gave me a glimpse of this possible new reality.
I have a firm place to set foot now in my dream of death. But it is not enough.
No sooner to I find something new and useful, then I am off again looking to something else.  My quest is to find comfort here? To find and or build a comfort zone?  Here?





Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Fresh Kills _ The Unfairness of It All - Day 9


The Unfairness of It All - Day 9
It is all so unfair.
Random acts of kindness.
Random acts of violence.
They say it is all stuck together by a big powerful, vengeful, loving God.
It is all chaos.
If you are smart you duck a lot to avoid the shit hitting the fan all day long.  And don’t give me that shitty original 7/11 marketing jingle expanded to  24/7.
There are 168 hours in a week all you morons out there that can’t count past 20.  That’s five fingers on each hand and the theoretical five toes on each foot for all you inbred idiots at Yale and Harvard with your secret inbred six digits here and there that have not yet been surgically altered.
It is all chaos in the universe.  It only falls together here and there with a little gravity thrown in.  And they say it is creatively designed.  It makes sense from a moron’s point of view.
Milk comes from a cow.  Why, somebody had to think that up all ahead of time.  Some genius god to make a mammal feed its young.
Oh, and the Jesus and dinosaur crowd. The earth is only six thousand years old because some book says so.  People put too much faith in what is written down sometimes.  Too much in fact.
If god is so smart why did he create dinosaurs, let them roam the earth for thousands or millions of years and then give up on another failed experiment of a hyperactive, attention deficit, never finishes what he starts half-assed creator?
And then you got Jesus perfect but human.  A virgin. Never pissed or shat or fornicated let alone masturbated and he is human? I don’t think so.
What is your definition of perfect?  Father is attention deficit.  So is the son.
Whatever.
Don’t go there.  Maybe all the bullshit is exactly as they say the bullshit is.
Yeah right.
Are shares of the Brooklyn Bridge negotiable or traded here on the Limbo Commodity Exchange?
Take a breath.  Slow.  Another.
Silence.
What a rip off life is.  What is the secret or meaning of life?
No answer.  Always no answer.
Might as well bounce everything off the rubber walls of this hell!
A thought.
I had these discussions.  Mild tirades really.  These discussions with myself a lot of times in my life.  The reasonable part of me always came back to the supposedly balanced idea that I was better off than ninety-five percent of humanity in terms of opportunities, freedoms, and material comforts.
That is all well and good.  It all gets listed under the heading of duck and cover from the chaos and the constant shit fight or shit hitting the fan and hitting the now feces adobe mix covered walls.
Shit happens!
It happened to me!
Life is not fair.  It sucks.  I am starting to sound like some clerks in shops at the Staten Island Mall.  “Life sucks. What do you want? What are you doing here?
“Well, I came to look at something and possibly buy it.”
Then the look.  That dead in face stare of the young these days.  It is unfair of me to pick on all these immigrants from Brooklyn who parked themselves at this dead end of the world.  Crossed the Verrazano Bridge only to find that other undesirable minorities too could cross the bridge and they are stuck there at the most god awful end of New York City in the forgotten borough.
Somebody forgot to tell that there are two other bridges to cross to escape from New York City and arrive in Jersey.  Go on try.  It is just another state.  Nobody will bite you.  If you leave, I might get some decent human service at the Mall.
Oh well that felt good. 
Malls.  Never understood them.  I think they represent some kind of utopian versions of post exchanges from the military in this military totalitarian loving country.  With parking.
Why did whoever attack my place of work?
God knows the World Trade Center and its box and glass architecture were the ugliest things on earth but it was a government boondoggle project. Everybody got a piece of that pork pie.  The unions, the bankers, the real estate developers, the city, etc. etc. etc.
Unsafe place to work.  Unsafe?  No radar warning systems.  No decent escapes systems.  Hell with two clips on your shoes and two clips on your hands, you could have slid down the outside of the building on the window washing machine tracks. Why didn’t somebody think of that? Did they ever really build that pork pie project up to its own specs?  Did more of the building go down every day in the backs of all the vans, that the construction workers drove around in, than actually went into the construction? Who is to say?
I am still waiting for a funeral.  I do not know if they let you out of limbo to witness such a thing.  I do not know if maybe when you get to the other side, to the hereafter, maybe you can go back in time to witness your funeral, send off.  Participate in the eulogy or whatever.  Finally see and more importantly feel the pain, the break from life and the great sendoff of the ship of your body and soul into eternity?
All seems so dark.
A noise.  An almost squeaking, tearing, shredding, scratching sound.  It is as if in my imagination metal rings and hooks and ropes are moving up some giant mast on a ship or more like the pole of a giant tent.
Light busts into my dark space.  It is only a little light.  It is muted, diffused through thick canvas like material.  It must be some bright light to pierce this thick material. It would be too bright to look directly at if I still had eyes to see with.  I would be blinded by such light that seems at least from this distance, this space of protection from its rays on this side of a canvas, to be brighter than a dozen suns.
The noise stops.  In an envisioned real space in real multi-dimensions, a crawl space is filled with a light showing through the thick canvas like material of a tent?
What did God say?  What did my imaginary friend say?
I was raising a small space in the dark corner, one dark corner, of the ignorance I bred and wallowed in, in my life. 
The universe gave me everything at birth and step by step, everybody including myself took it away.  What was it?  It.
I somehow have one of those brainstorms in life. That like in some old Aldo Rey, Judy Holiday movie. You don’t have to be smart all of your life to be successful, you just have to be smart for a short time, take notes and capitalize on that moment.
I sense that sheer desperation of thought and sheer strength of will power have helped me pushed the canvas up the tent pole but only so far.
I am scared.  I do not want to jump into any light especially the one so bright as on the other side of this tent material. I also am suddenly reluctant to raise the tent any further.  What might I find?  Dinosaur bones.  Old dreams. Unfulfilled dreams.  More anger.  More grief.  More questions. 
I back off like those migrating souls from Brooklyn who were hesitant to make the big jump to Jersey and beyond.  Maybe I will just stay at the Mall here in Limbo and tell anybody that wants some service to just fuck off.
Am exhausted.  Back off.  Into a darker space.  Must orient myself to this new light thing.  Is this a material manifestation in a non-material world?
Time to think.  Time to hesitate.  Time to curl up into some fetal position and hide from current reality.  It really is overwhelming.
It really is scary.
It gives me a headache I think.




Monday, January 15, 2018

Fresh Kills _ Why Me - Day 8


Why Me? - Day 8
It is of course all about me.  But I am pissed.
Why am I in silence here?  If there is nothing passed death except this momentary electrical current feed for the dead brain of a dead body long gone, mixed into the dust of Manhattan, why not pull the plug?
This is ridiculous.  I have been, had been a patient man all my life and now these endless round of nothingness, nothing that matters.  No matter.
Light. Dark.  Past image.  Where is the future?
Is the life after death an eternal round of loop dreams?
“In that dream of death, what dreams will come?”
Well Will Shakespeare, good guess.
Nobody comes this far and goes back to tell a tale of this or is all this an expanded version of what might turn into a condensed version back on the plane of mortals should I have had an out of body experience. Can’t have that now. No body left.
I do recall getting all excited at the age of two or so hearing and seeing relatives coming to visit.  I rushed down the steps too quickly and did a somersault down the wooden staircase of out modest row house in Philly.
I can remember jumping out of my body and watching the whole thing from across the room.  I remember seeing my mother screaming over my still body and then a remember jumping back into the body.  Strange thing.
Is this what ghosts do? Seek?  A place to haunt or a body to possess?  No answer.  Not a question I am supposed to ask?
Well the volume goes up on my thoughts I start to scream for attention to my thoughts.  No answer. But then I half imagine my imaginary playmate as a child coming into reachable communication.
I ask a question.
Why am I here?
A giggle.  God, that was my imaginary playmate’s name, responds sort of.
God explains to me that I am in one of the trapped corners that humanity invented for themselves to hide from the great universal truth.
Universal truth?
Physics. Justice. Fairness. Balance.  Beauty.  Purpose. Etc.
Trapped corners?
More like dark corners?
?
Ignorance hides from the light of reason.
?
Think of yourself as a dot on a chart.  Your life and experiences can be plotted in two dimensions as a line going forward.  If you expand the line to all points in 2D, you can draw a circle.  If you expand further to a multi-dimensional model, you can touch all the points of a sphere.
All the possibilities of mortal existence are within the sphere.  But somewhere along your timeline lifetime you accent fear, you go inside the box.
Box?
The tribe, the clan, the government, the church all want to control the possibilities of your sphere and your infinite range of choices in thought and action within your mortal sphere.  They build a box around every individual sphere.
And?
And then they tell you that thinking outside the box is more dangerous than good. They do this to cull the crowd.  They are always looking for the smart mortals to recruit them for their agenda or to destroy them if they want to expand the sphere and destroy their cage, their box.
Still ???
They say think outside the box.  But the only place they want you to think outside the box is at the six points on a box that the sphere intercepts or touches their patented box, the one they pretend is of your own creation.  You come back with a different explanation for the whole scheme of things and they dump you into the eight darkest corners of their box.
Still ???
Here, they have no total control of the box anymore. You have control.
Since you never challenged much in the group think of humanity, you more or less assumed all the bull crap put out by your parents, community, church, government etc., you fell into the black holes of ignorance of that corrupt mortal plane.
Here in your quarantine, you will come to understand, that you must convert the box of others, the box of ignorance and expand it back into a sphere surrounding the sphere of your life.  Once you do that, you will have more space to think, reason; see what you never saw in the dark corners of the box of ignorance.  In this outer shell, outer sphere, you begin the process to exit through the skin, the veil that separates you from the true hereafter.
What is the true hereafter?
How long does it take? I ask like a whining child.
However long it takes, the space of time divides into forty. 
Silence.
I sense that my imaginary friend God has disappeared into my toy box of things once played with and now discarded.
I begin to ponder this whole situation.
I am here.  And I wonder if I had been some wonderful great mystic or saint, could I have exited life and just walked into the hereafter.
I sense that the answer is no.
Everybody must take the time to re-orientate and reconcile oneself from the past and do the same in anticipation of the future.
Strange how humanity has the capacity to cure poverty and ignorance but never cures it, but many are willing to turn a blind eye or even actively promote ignorance – evil – push others into the darks corners of existence.
An inner voice told me that those who pushed others into the dark must here in this limbo, this purgatory, this quarantine; they must push those others back into some sort of light out of the box and into this temporary sphere of existence. Strange idea.
And what time, time does not exist here, to undo the evil of life it takes, that measure of all things here is divided into forty unites of measure, time etc.
Strange thoughts indeed.
In a way in my time here, I must be putting up poles, like in a tent to expand dark pyramid corners of the box into a part, parts of a new sphere, living space, spirit space. This, in order to orientate myself to another sphere down the road?
Is everything in the universe contained within something else?





Sunday, January 14, 2018

Fresh Kills _ Dream - Day 7


Dream - Day 7
I slept, no I dreamed all night. What is night here?
It is definitely another time period.  Time of sorts moves here too but on what scale of measurement I have not a clue.
I was briefly in the lobby of the World Trade Center, the south tower.  No doubt a symbolic place to exit from the building.
Strange dream.
Why can’t I get out of that building?
I am sitting and orientating my work at a desk.  I am beginning to realize that one of the causes of my death checked off in boxes on a NYC death certificate form should also have the cause as “Workaholic”.
If I had not been habitually thirty minutes early for work to put things in order, make coffee etc., I would not have been where I was when the plane hit me dead on.
I might have been in the lobby waiting to get on an elevator.  Why didn’t I use my flex time more wisely?
In fact, I have bragged for years that I was a workaholic.  Something so ungenerous we Americans are to ourselves is the denying ourselves a few minutes here and there.  I few hours here and there for an extended lunch.  A full six weeks of vacation like the Europeans.
In a way, the factory schedule of the world war two war machine has never left America.  Of course, the phrase “Time is money.” is carved in stone on Plymouth Rock I assume etc. Puritans and Puritanism suck big time.
The strange thing about the dream and the lobby thing is that I was going to call home and tell them I was all right.  Who works twenty four hours a day for some gadamn corporation?  Only fools.  And then when you are fifty-five they give you a boot and package that will not leave you solvent until 65 and Social Security.
It is as if they have everything on a spreadsheet down to the last penny in pay and to the last second in time.  No time for coffee.
Of course, it is all paper profit.  Phantom profit.  Having worked in finance everyone knows that the quarterly profit is merely a matter of opinion.
And if a company actually pays a dividend anymore, it is just some temporary loan from Big Bank paying the dividend.  It’s all a Ponzi scheme.
When America made automobiles, your work unit produced eight and a quarter Oldsmobiles per shift. If you came up short, the supervisor and the line manager figured out quick why you came out short.  These days, a dozen consultants and three months later they will figure out or do a report on why you came up short on cars during one shift at the factory three months ago. Pure bullshit.
Management piled on top of management and they call it business.  Why not get back into building something real like cars instead of jerking off on computers all day long and call that production on some corporate spreadshit?
Strange dream.
The lights are on in the lobby.  They were reflecting off the white marble veneers and stainless steel polished trims.  Darkness and night outside
Strange what I clearly remember about the lobby.  There were people moving about.  Only a few.  It was night after all.  And they were coming and going but I did not see any faces.  I saw one or two faces. Strangers. They were asking me business questions about my job, my productivity. I assumed they were management above me since they asked the questions.
Cannot remember what the matter was about.  But somehow I got stuck with some detail.  I was walking back and forth between lobbies.  One World Trade Center was full of those counters for airline tickets and rental cars.  Two World Trade Center is pretty much empty except for the tourists that crowd the lobby in day time wanting to buy tickets to the observation deck way up high.
In a way, I think I was trying to get back up to my office which I think, no, I know is no longer there.
The task that I had been assigned to has to do with shipping two coffins that had somehow been misplaced in the corner of one of the lobbies.  Nobody seemed to know where to ship them.  The paperwork attached to these objects in transit somehow got lost.
Then it struck me that my office was in the lobby in the dream and what was left of it in reality too, sat there after the collapse of the building.  Strange the lobby looked so pristine and perfect, almost as if it was the first day official day of business on April 4, 1973.
In fact, not being a native New Yorker, having come here in 1978, the lobby was as I remembered it. I am color blind but I think the wall to wall carpeting in the lobbies was a sky blue.  That and white marble and light streaming in on an afternoon sun into number two’s lobby often evoked the feeling of walking amongst clouds. The carpet pile was so thick and the steps of walking were cushioned a bit like walking on air. 
We had moved to Arizona for a number of years and then moved back to this city.  They had changed the color of carpet to some sort of dark mauve.  It was never the same to me walking through the lobbies.  That and even before we left, they had built a hotel that blocked that afternoon sun in Two’s lobby. 
I was perhaps looking at the ideal, my ideal impression of the building, from an ideal in time.  The only thing wrong was that there was no sunlight.  It was night outside these lobbies.  The eternal night of death?
And the paperwork on the two coffins? Symbolism perhaps?  But why two?  There was only me that I knew of.
And again I sensed to know that besides the normal forty or so days of separation between death and the hereafter there was some sort of snafu in the paperwork of myself and somebody else lost in the bureaucratic hell of here.
Snafu meant that I might be staying here indefinitely.
Two other things.
My dream was in a loop.  Parts of it got repeated over and over again.  I wondered when I was alive why you get stuck in scenes of a dream and play it over and over again.  Is it obsessive compulsive disorder? Does life imprint, transfer over into death.  I wonder.
In a way, the dream is over.  You are tired and stay asleep.  Your desire to explore here in a dream world is limited.  You may wish to dream all but the program or the programing of content of that night’s dream is allotted in the brain.
Maybe dreaming is a healthy sportful, thoughtful exercise.  But too much of anything is not necessarily a good thing.
And the other thing with faces.  Cannot remember the faces of my loved ones.  Cannot remember the details of that other life.
Was being a workaholic, did that answer the question?  Did I work to escape the responsibilities of home life?
No answer.
No quality time at home.  No quality memories of it in death?
No.  That is not the answer.  But what is?
In a way I start to remember dreams from when I was living.
In those dreams, there were faceless people too.  In fact when I dreamed about my father or mother, now deceased, they were so like Arabic art, faceless.
I sensed their presence in dreams but in retrospect, I was really alone in those dreams with moving mannequins populating the stage of my dreams and giving and taking along some theme and dialogue.  But I was the star of my own stage production in each dream.  I was alone on stage in those dreams?
Alone. We seem to be born alone.  Live alone much of the time?  Dream alone.  Die alone.
Was it all an illusion?  Was that other life? That so-called real life?  Was that the real thing?  Or is reality this dream?





Saturday, January 13, 2018

Fresh Kills _ Not Alone in Death - Day 6


Not Alone in Death - Day 6
For the first time since the incident, I begin to realize that I was not alone in death on that morning of that tragic event. Besides myself and likely that one fireman and the fireman at the cathedral and other firemen and probably cops too got swept in something a little heavier in dose than a random act of violence.
It was perhaps the Brit PM sniffing around for a political opportunity in New York and that memorial service blocking my entrance to St. Tom’s that the numbers started to roll in my brain, calculate upwards, dozens, hundreds, maybe even thousands.
It was so early in the workday. We, me in particular, part of numbers to be calculated, all sitting at a desk, at work, and in perfect target pose such as myself, ourselves.
Thoughts of that first instance, that condensed moment replay on my air of thought.  I remember the sound of Spanish.  I somehow am standing on an empty street corner in Staten Island.  It is Port Richmond Avenue, the old drag of the old center of commerce until the turn of the twentieth century when the focus of commerce and transportation got switched over to a municipal ferry terminal near the new Borough Hall in St. George. 
Staten Island joining the new city configuration of five counties forming the official political entity of New York City had its forgotten borough – that of Staten Island. Some whine that the city forgets Richmond County in its budgets but in reality it is geography that traps Staten Island on Jersey side of New York bay and the transportation nightmare of moving goods and people around the three islands of Manhattan, Long Island (Brooklyn and Queens) and Staten Island has always been a nightmare, even in ancient times.
The sounds of Spanish, but no, I understand what is being said by amigos standing on the street corner here in Mex-town. This, as they wait as day laborers on a street corner waiting for work.  They count this one and that one who did not come home from work that day at the World Trade Center.
The dust had settled and not everybody in the city was still in shell shock. This primary wait corner counted six or seven regulars that had disappeared.  They compare notes with other hot spot waiting spots along Port Richmond Avenue.  Indeed the numbers exceed sixty or seventy in crude counts and may be upwards of a hundred or more.
They had waited a few days, a few weeks to do this form of unofficial census to measure individual grief’s of those individuals and families that immediately missed their loved ones.  But now, days and weeks after, the Day of the Dead will be celebrated in this community and the official community toll was to be considered.
Many men and women showed up days later who had been thought to have disappeared in the 911 disaster.  They had sought refuge with friends and relatives elsewhere in their trek back home to here. Strange how just being alive and just surviving makes some forget that there are telephones to call home etc. 
Some it was thought even left straight from the destruction and were indeed headed home to Mexico and other parts south but not that many.  The truth was that undocumented among the dead would remain as anonymous facts except for here in this community and others like it.
Yes, the toll would be mentioned over and over again and fifty would become a hundred and so on as oral tradition makes its official story line and myth here in Mex-town in Staten Island as it does in similar Spanish speaking enclaves all over the city of New York.
I was not alone.  Strange.  I see no one.  I hear voices; see the occasional side view profile of people still alive and talking indirectly about my death. To them, it was an event.  The death is about me.  It is all about me. The others, the facts, the statistics don’t mean jack. 
I tire and seem to need to withdraw.  Is this I need to sleep even in the realm of the everlasting.  Too many questions.  Not enough answers.  A weariness of soul?




Friday, January 12, 2018

Fresh Kills _ Alone in Death - Day 5


Alone in Death – Day 5
Perhaps the fear of death is the greatest fear for some.
I remember the apprehension and absolute fear as I at first, in amazement, no shock, made the realization that the object, cause of my death, was rushing at me at hundreds of miles per hour.
It was all so quick.  I had fear for a split second.  Then it was all over.
As I sit in this anti-world, anti-life, disembodied place, I reflect.
So much of what the world is about is that long nagging, most times ignored, question – what happens when I die.  Which is often mixed with the question – what happens after death?
Is this a split second in time, that my brain and its conscious function are trapped in, following my murder?
There, I finally used the word murder.  Cause of death – “Homicide”, at “Place of Work” – flashes across my thoughts.  That is what the death certificate will say.  But did they ever find a body as evidence.  Highly unlikely.
No wonder I am in limbo. Limbo? Is that it? It is a real (unreal) place somewhere in the cosmos on merely on the bottom half of that head of a needle thing populated by angels?
Angels?  Haven’t seen any.
Did I hear any?
A strange sound in the distance.
What was that?

Silence.